What are the places that have transformed you? What are the cities you’ll never forget? What are the paths that will forever mark your soul?

In creating their new book of poetry and flash fiction, The Maps That Contain Us, bestselling author Marla Miniano and singer/songwriter Reese Lansangan write about the restless, unforgettable migrations of their spirits. From Ann Siang Road in Singapore to Matnog in Sorsogon, from Amsterdam to Tokyo to Hawaii, they explore love, loss, life, and loneliness in this collection, hoping to finally find their place in this world.


“We both love going places, and being away from home and coming home and finding new homes have all inspired a big chunk of our work,” says Marla. “We also want to encourage our readers to approach travel with more insight and introspection—to look at it beyond what’s tourist-y and Instagrammable.”

This is the co-authors’ second collection together, after 2015’s bestselling poetry collection In Case You Come Back. For The Maps That Contain Us, Marla and Reese reunited with San Francisco-based illustrator Jamie Catt, who also did the art for their first book.

Through free verse, short fiction, and even haiku, both Marla and Reese stake out the places that have transformed them...and discover that, for every journey, there is always a return. “I wonder,” Marla muses in her piece “Boarding Gate”:

...if I should tell them that
just because people want to find
something doesn’t mean they’ve lost
themselves, that just because people go away
doesn’t mean they’re never coming back.

Singer-songwriter Reese Lansangan is an independent musician whose song “Exploration No. 5” was honored by Apple Music as among the best in 2016.

Marla Miniano is the author of young adult romance series, two short story collections, and is now print editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan Philippines.

Marla and Reese launched The Maps That Contain Us through a special signing activity at the recently concluded Manila International Book Fair on September 16 at the SMX Convention Center.

The Maps That Contain Us
is now available at all leading bookstores for P250.